Visiting countries like Japan, you’re always drawn to hyper-modern cities like Tokyo, or classic, traditional places like Kyoto. While I’ve spent a lot of time here, I’d never spent much time in the countryside, much less the wilderness. I’ve always used a bicycle to explore an urban area. When Circles brought handful of US framebuilders and myself over to Nagoya for the Gourmet Century Asuke, they asked us to bring our own bikes. Not just to display at the Personal Bike Show, but to embark on a week-long bicycle tour with. This influenced what everyone brought greatly and ultimately, was a true test of each builder’s philosophy on touring. (more…)
Some people swear by Bob Trailers for bicycle touring, others are more into panniers or bikepacking bags. If you enjoy touring with a trailer, check out the Sentier system on Kickstarter.
You might recognize this one… When Nils got hit by a car, totaling his Chumba, he had to convert his Cycle Fab Surly LHT Cargo machine back to a 700c touring bike for every day rides. Now, it’s his ride for Aids Life Cycle.
Before heading out of town, he swung by to say hello and pick up some last minute provisions. I took his bike out for two photos (you’ll have to excuse the printer, it happened to be on the sidewalk and worked as a perfect prop for this fully-loaded bike.) My two favorite details are Nils’ self-made frame bag and how he mounted the Porcelain Rocket Mr. Fusion directly to his rack mounts, rather than the seatpost. Nicely done!
Follow Nils on his trip at @FrankWithoutBeans!
Buck Macho checking in. You won’t find any pictures of me here, because one of the conditions of me bringing outsiders to Central Texas was no photographs of me on bike websites. I was there, though, and I’m probably in the best position to tell the story, since it’s obvious my guests– Jason, Ty and Jesse – have a hard time handling their liquor.
Jason, Ty and Jesse are members of “Chet Bearclaw’s Adventure Cycling Team”, and I’m a longtime friend of the team’s owner/founder, Chet Bearclaw. My friendship with Chet started in 1998, when he crash-landed his hot air balloon in a field of my ranch. He had intended to circumnavigate the globe, but that’s a story for another time.
From what I was told, the last time Jason, Ty and Jesse had ridden bikes together was on Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, in the winter. Seemed like a dumb as dog shit idea to me, but to each their own. It’s not that I don’t like winter, but if I’m gonna be freezing my dick off, I’d rather be on a snowmobile going 75mph. (more…)
… because your bikes have been waiting!
I should preface this post with saying it WAS loaded for fun last weekend before the MWBA Pancake Breakfast campout. Before Mike, the new mechanic at Golden Saddle, left for the outing, I snatched up his Velo Orange Piolet for a few photos. Now, I’ve been a fan of the Piolet since its inception but haven’t ever been able to see one in person. Mike’s made the right impression with not only his build specs, but allowing me to see and ride this bike fully loaded. While we all obsess over parts and their performance, I think the overall picture of a fully-loaded touring bike is more relevant. For instance, people critique the Paul Klampers for being “too heavy,” yet on a tourer, that’s kind of moot. Speaking of moot, Mike went with a Moots bar, post and stem. My favorite detail however is that shot of the Paul skewer and Klamper, side by side, like they were meant to be! That and the backpack in the Wald basket…
Hopefully bikes like this inspire you to take your bike, put on a Wald, a saddle pack, flat pedals and just go camping.
Follow Marc Maurer as he rides 5600 kilometers crossing the Caucasus Mountains.
There’s been a lotta camping going on here in Los Angeles and unfortunately, I haven’t been able to partake in the festivities due to either work or other obligations but tomorrow, that’s all changing. The guys at Topanga Creek Outpost invited Kyle and I on a two-day bicycle camping trip Wednesday and Thursday, so I broke the Indy Fab out of my storage unit and loaded it up with my Porcelain Rocket bags.
This go round I’ll be traveling pretty light, relying on a sleeping bag, pad and a minimalist bivy for warmth during the cool coastal nights. My packing is pretty dialed at this point, with lighter items like clothing in the rear saddle pack, my “bed” in the front and food, utensils, tools and camera lenses in the frame pack.
I always want to do a knolling photo, but I figured it might be fun to do in-field rather than before I take off. We’ve got content scheduled for the next two days, so stay tuned and hopefully we’ll have some great stories on Friday when I return.
Feel free to see some more photos below and leave any questions you might have in the comments!
The Bridgestone X0-1 should need no introduction. These 26″ touring bikes carry a cult-like following all over the world, sometimes fetching a pretty penny on eBay, especially when it comes to this livery. When you think Bridgestone and Grant Petersen, this bike usually comes to mind first. At least it does with me and my favorite part of the history of this particular model of Japan-built Bridgestones is how evident its DNA is in the Rivendell lineage. There’s something magical about this bike and when I saw Nathan wheel this bike in through the doors at Golden Saddle Cyclery, with his shit-eating grin, I actually hated him for a split second.
But you can’t hate Nathan and I can’t think of anyone else I’d rather see with this bike. Especially once you hear what he paid for it. Sheesh. Since this is a special machine, I took some extra time with the photoshoot. I hope you enjoy!
Blackburn knows how to party!